Events

We're a friendly group who run a programme of evening talks from September to June, with a Quiz Night in October. Talks are at Bishop's Park Community Centre on the second Tuesday in each month.
We also have a walks programme, including local morning walks, day trips a bit further afield, and usually a weekend of birding once a year.
Everyone is welcome; you don't have to be a member of the RSPB (or the local group) to come along, although it is a good idea to confirm outdoor walks prior to the event. See below for more details.

March 2019

Tue
12

Evening Talk - The British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) - by Paul Stancliffe

Location: Bishop's Park Community Centre, Lancaster Way, Bishop's Park, Bishop's Stortford (next to Tesco)
Postcode: CM23 4DA
Postcode: CM23 4DA (Google map)

Paul Stancliffe will take us through the role and purpose of the BTO, including the data mining (ringing, surveys etc) and what it means.

'The British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) is an independent charitable research institute combining professional and citizen science aimed at using evidence of change in wildlife populations, particularly birds, to inform the public, opinion-formers and environmental policy- and decision-makers. Our impartiality enables our data and information to be used both by Government and NGO campaigners.
Our long-term monitoring data on the status of UK birds sets the standard worldwide for understanding the effects of environmental change on wildlife. Over 40,000 volunteer birdwatchers, in partnership with professional research scientists, collect high quality monitoring data on birds and other wildlife. The combination of professional ecologists, long-term datasets some in excess of 50 years, and volunteers participating all over the country gives the BTO a unique, impartial and knowledgeable voice in nature conservation'.

Time: 7.30pm

Price: £ 3.00 for Stort Valley Members, £ 5.00 for Visitors

Telephone: 07808684723

E-mail: simon.hurwitz@ntlworld.com

Sat
23

Walk - Rutland Water Nature Reserve

Location: Meet at Rutland Water Anglian Birdwatching Centre at 10.00am
Postcode: LE15 8BT (Google map)

This internationally famous nature reserve is one of the most important wildfowl sanctuaries in Great Britain.
It is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, designated as a European Special Protection Area and internationally recognised as a globally important wetland RAMSAR site.
The reserve occupies shore line and shallow water lagoons along several miles of the western end of Rutland Water with plenty of bird watching hides and nature trails plus a well-equipped visitor centre. At this time of year we can expect to see some great wildfowl flocks all around the reserve.

Time: 10.00am

Price: £6/£5 concessions. Donations to Local Group welcome

Telephone: 07454 801894

E-mail: l.jaques@yahoo.co.uk

April 2019

Tue
9

Evening Talk - Our Place, Can We Save Britain's Wildlife Before it's Too Late? - by Mark Cocker

Location: Bishop's Park Community Centre, Lancaster Way, Bishop's Park, Bishop's Stortford (next to Tesco)
Postcode: CM23 4DA
Postcode: CM23 4DA (Google map)

We are truly honoured to have Mark Cocker speaking to us about his latest book, which is summed up in the title!

MARK COCKER is an author of creative non-fiction. He is also a naturalist and environmental tutor, who writes and broadcasts on nature and wildlife in a variety of national media. In 2018 he released a new book Our Place on the fate of British nature since the beginning of the twentieth century. He will also complete 30 years as a Guardian country diarist.

His 10 other books include works of biography, history, literary criticism and memoir. They include Claxton: Field Notes from a Small Planet (2014) and Birds and People (2013). The latter was published to international acclaim and was a collaboration with the photographer David Tipling. Between them these two were shortlisted for six literary awards including the Thwaites/Wain- wright Prize. His book Crow Country was shortlisted for several awards, including the Samuel Johnson Prize, and won the New Angle Prize (2009). In 2016 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Literature from the University of East Anglia, where he has recently placed his archive.

He has travelled in more than 50 countries on six continents and in 1999 was awarded a Winston Churchill Travel Fellowship to study birds in magico-medicinal practices in Benin and Cameroon. For the last 35 years his home has been in Norfolk, where much of his spare time is devoted to the restoration of a small wooded fen called Blackwater.


Please contact Simon Hurwitz if you wish to come on 07808684723, simon.hurwitz@ntlworld.com - as will be very popular!

Time: 7.30pm

Price: £ 3.00 for Stort Valley Members, £ 5.00 for Visitors

Booking essential

Telephone: 07808684723

E-mail: simon.hurwitz@ntlworld.com

Sat
27

Walk - Walton on the Naze

Location: Meet at the Naze Centre at 10.00am
Postcode: CO14 8LE (Google map)

Managed by the Essex Wildlife Trust, the Naze is a unique coastal landscape of outstanding geological and biological importance. As the most easterly peninsula in Essex it is an important site for migrating birds and boasts a number of different habitats, both terrestrial and marine. The Naze also has immense historic and civic importance, the famous Naze Tower being just one example, and is a site where coastal change can be easily seen and understood - the sandy cliffs can be seen crumbling under the impact of the waves.
There are two cafes, a visitor centre and a gift shop.

Time: 10.00am

Price: There is a charge for parking. Donations to Local Group welcome

Telephone: 07454 801894

E-mail: l.jaques@yahoo.co.uk

May 2019

Tue
14

Evening Talk - To Be Announced

Location: Bishop's Park Community Centre, Lancaster Way, Bishop's Park, Bishop's Stortford (next to Tesco)
Postcode: CM23 4DA
Postcode: CM23 4DA (Google map)

to follow

Time: 7.30pm

Price: £ 3.00 for Stort Valley Members, £ 5.00 for Visitors

Telephone: 07808684723

E-mail: simon.hurwitz@ntlworld.com

Sat
18

May Weekend - Northumberland

Location: Northumberland - Farne Islands, Coquet Island, Hauxley Nature Reserve, etc.

Our annual group trip this year is based around a weekend in Northumberland.
Initial plans are to visit the Farne Islands, to see the breeding birds such as puffins, eider ducks, kittiwakes, fulmars, guillemots, razorbills, sandwich terns, common terns, shags, and many other birds besides. The Arctic terns should have arrived and Grey seals can be seen from boats - also dolphins if we're lucky!
We will also be able to take the boat out to Coquet Island, an RSPB reserve. Whilst we can't land, the boat does go close enough to see the birdlife this island haven holds, including 90% of the UK's roseate tern population - one of the country's rarest nesting seabirds. Other nesting species here include fulmars, kittiwakes, eider ducks and oystercatchers - and of course the puffins.
Lee also plans to visit Hauxley Wildlife Discovery Centre, one of the best wildlife-watching spots in the North East. Right next to the beach, it offers fantastic views across the length of Druridge Bay and is internationally renowned for its birds. Once the site of open-cast mining, the reserve has recently been extensively remodelled and extended, and the latest addition is the new eco-friendly visitors centre, built of straw bales.
Birds are not the only attraction here. Flowers include viper's bugloss, bloody cranesbill and northern marsh orchid. These attract butterflies such as the common blue and the wall brown. Dragonflies and damselflies can be seen on the ponds, and the woods are home to red squirrels.

Please register your interest with Lee and/or Simon, so that we can get an idea of numbers. Depending on interest and time available, we hope to add other locations to this trip.

Time: 9.00am

Price: Boat trip fees. Donations to Local Group welcome

Booking essential

Telephone: 07454 801894

E-mail: l.jaques@yahoo.co.uk

June 2019

Tue
11

AGM and other events

Location: Bishop's Park Community Centre, Lancaster Way, Bishop's Park, Bishop's Stortford (next to Tesco)
Postcode: CM23 4DA
Postcode: CM23 4DA (Google map)

Annual AGM and other events to follow

Time: 7.30pm

Price: £ 3.00 for Stort Valley Members, £ 5.00 for Visitors

Telephone: 07808684723

E-mail: simon.hurwitz@ntlworld.com